Vancouver: More Service / Great Blog

Calls for added service on transit systems are nothing new.  We have seen lots of them in Toronto as we struggle to implement the Ridership Growth Strategy despite a shortage of operators, vehicles and, I suspect, budget headroom.

Meanwhile in Vancouver, riding is growing apace, and the additional challenge of the coming winter Olympics has yet to be digested.

A very fine blog from Vancouver is run by Stephen Rees.  In a recent post about service quality to outlying sports venues, he included the following:

If transit is to be an attractive, useful alternative to driving then Translink has to get much better at understanding how to make routes easy and convenient to use. The biggest block to transit use in this region is lack of service frequency and the planners at CMBC and Translink are both way out of line on what they feel is a “frequent” service. It does not mean ‘more buses than we had last year’. It means that people do not get passed up at stops – and do not have to wait for interminable periods of time due to chronic unreliability. It is not just how many buses you have, but how you use them and how much priority the bus gets in congested traffic. In my travels recently I have been been frequently struck by how easy it is to use buses elsewhere – and how frustrating it is to be stuck at a bus stop here not having the slightest idea of when – or if – the next bus will arrive.

Sound familiar?

6 thoughts on “Vancouver: More Service / Great Blog

  1. As usual, it always seems like the feds only invest in transit when there is a major event like the Olympics or a World’s Fair. Toronto has hosted neither. Can’t we get a better transit system without also wasting billions on some fancy stadiums that are used for 2 weeks after which they are empty most of the time? Politics as usual.

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  2. Andrew wrote, “As usual, it always seems like the feds only invest in transit when there is a major event like the Olympics or a World’s Fair.”

    Hmmmm…

    #dreaming mode on
    What if we campaigned to have the “International Exposition of Public Transit” (or whatever more exciting name anyone can come up with) to be held in Toronto? Then the feds would have to invest billions in transit developments that I’m sure we could make use of well beyond the two weeks of the fair!
    #dreaming mode off

    Sorry, I nodded off and had a nightmare about a bunch of “my pet project is better than your pet project” government boondoggles.

    Steve: I made a minor spelling correction to the name of the proposed fair as entered by Calvin, although I must say the absence of the letter “l” would have made for quite an interesting event.

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  3. Steve wrote, “I made a minor spelling correction to the name of the proposed fair as entered by Calvin, although I must say the absence of the letter “l” would have made for quite an interesting event.”

    Thanks for catching that! I was more focused on whether to use the word “fair” or throw in a pun with “fare”. So much so that I made the sort of mistake that is not caught by a spell-checker! 😉

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  4. If you want a couple more Vancouver transit blogs:

    Short Turns is from a driver’s perspective:
    http://busdriver.wordpress.com

    The Buzzer is from the company (the title deriving from a regular handbill-sized news sheet regularly handed out on buses and trains for about 60 years or so:
    http://buzzer.translink.ca
    Not just hype, and the person running it, while representing the company, actually appears to listen to and care about what passengers are thinking!

    If there’s anything similar in Toronto, please let us leftcoasters know.

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  5. Jonathon: (Hint: Toronto votes Liberal/NDP- always.)

    Hear Hear. It’s just too bad that the Fiberal/NDP alliance is trying to block the Conservative Transit Plan. Somehow it sounds better if they do it, but what have they done anyways?

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